slevelt , avatar

if anything good can come out of the disaster at the , surely it’s a rethink of accepting digital “copies” as fulfilment of legal deposit. @bookstodon

slevelt OP , avatar

oh and nobody needs to tell me that physical libraries are vulnerable, too — I’ve studied the Cotton Collection so believe me, I know. that, however, does not take away that digital “copies” fundamentally cannot promise anywhere near the survival chances that physical books do.

you can tell me I was wrong about this in about 1100 years, which is the approximate age of the oldest manuscript I have worked with. good as new.


slevelt OP , avatar
albnelson , avatar

@slevelt @bookstodon I see from the alt text that it's Noah's Ark but my first thought was "the bark of Peter"

slevelt OP , avatar

@albnelson @bookstodon yes, God is very much Christ in these illustrations, so indeed it’s echoing the walking on water, too - which may well not be entirely unintentional

albnelson , avatar

@slevelt @bookstodon it makes me wonder about the shift to the Michelangelo “really old guy” God the Father. Then other Renaissance/early modern folks wouldn’t show God the Father at all, just the Tertragrammaton (sp). I wonder if it’s all a result of Aquinas/scholastics

MadisonMonkey , avatar

@slevelt @bookstodon that’s gorgeous, especially thinking on the tools used to create it.

joyce , avatar

@slevelt @bookstodon

Absolutely right. I've worked with 1000-year-old manuscripts that could have made yesterday.

glennf , avatar

@slevelt @bookstodon I was talking with Kevin Kelly at an informal conference once after his talk, and a guy came up and said, you both do print books and ebooks. I assume the ebooks are much easier. We both laughed—not at him! But the concept. Kevin explained and I chimed in that because of the variability and broken aspects of EPUB in particular, it was incredibly time-consuming.

I have some little confidence EPUB will be readable; PDF more so. But I do worry about most non-image formats.

krans , avatar

@glennf @slevelt @bookstodon PDF/A is probably acceptably future-proof. However, I'm much more worried about the long term survival of digital storage media. Bring back microfilm?

julieofthespirits , avatar

@krans @glennf @slevelt @bookstodon honestly there's no substitute for paper in terms of preservation

Electronic media is good for short term dissemination and terrible for long term preservation

You need both, these days

glennf , avatar

@krans @slevelt @bookstodon There’s a need for heavily redundant, constantly refreshed, secure and distributed

slevelt OP , avatar

@glennf @krans @bookstodon or, you know, codices. since that technology already exists and has proven reasonably reliable, and its durability also economically feasible over long periods of time (measuring in centuries up to about a millennium and a half and counting, not decades)

marcroberts , avatar

@slevelt @bookstodon Digital preservation is hard

zenkat , avatar

@slevelt @bookstodon Backstory please?

slevelt OP , avatar

@zenkat @bookstodon it’s a two-parter: 1) in October, the British Library has suffered a cyber attack; most digital services have not yet recovered 2) Legal Deposit is the arrangement that obliges publishers to send a copy of every publication to the British Library (and, if requested to do so, to 4 other libraries), to preserve and ensure access to future generations, in place since the 17th century. since 2013, the arrangement has been that digital “copies” suffice, even for books that are published on paper too. the “default” was agreed to be print, but that default is not enforced or necessarily adhered to.

edbilodeau , avatar

@slevelt @zenkat @bookstodon Has there been reports of any digitized content having been lost? I had understood that it was only only access to services and collections that was lost while the affected systems were offline.

slevelt OP , avatar

@edbilodeau @zenkat @bookstodon I do not know but in any case the expressed rationale of legal deposit is preservation and access (“both in order to preserve the material for the use of future generations and to make it available for readers”).

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